McCullum trying hard to defend his opening slot

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Wellington, Nov. 1 (ANI): New Zealand batsman Brendon McCullum had it enough when he was singled out in the cricket contracts saga and sacked as the vice-captain, but the biggest blow came when his position as an ODI opener came into danger.

McCullum has a chance to retain his opening position if he performs well in a three-match series against Pakistan, the New Zealand Herald reports.

During this series, he will have to prove to the selectors that his immense skills are better suited to the initial 10-over powerplay than any other stage.

At the recent Champions Trophy in South Africa, McCullum reached 40 in his first three innings, got half a start in his fourth, before an excruciating 14-ball duck in the final.

The most worrying thing during the series was that McCullum's innings seemed as he was batting against the fear of failure, the report says.

However, his opening partner Jesse Ryder has all the praise for McCullum.

"I think he should stay up there and I don't see why people are saying put him back to seven because the records show that we do pretty well together up the top of the order," Ryder said.

"It's not very often we fail as a partnership and at this stage, I think it's been really good. It's good for both of us because our personalities combine well when we bat with each other out and he really is a calming influence on me," he added.

New Zealand Cricket rates Ryder's talent so highly that they will take into account his thoughts on who should open with him.

But Captain Daniel Vettori seemed as if he was leaning towards dropping McCullum down the order. (ANI)

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